For some families, Home Education is a choice. For other families, it is a necessity. Whatever your reason for home educating your child makes the most of it. If you’ve got to the stage where you are considering home educating your child don’t panic. You don’t need to be a teacher to do this! You don’t even have to follow the curriculum. Take a breath and decide what you want from this learning experience. If it’s GCSE’s then you may need to follow the curriculum. If it’s life skills then you may not.
The beauty of home educating is that you aren’t constrained to time frames. There is no 9 – 3 anymore. Work around yourself and your child and be as flexible as you can. If your child wants to learn at 9pm and that fits in with you then why not!
When I home educated my daughter didn’t sleep very well and she was at her peak around midnight and slept around 4am. Whilst this may sound a bizarre time to be learning it was the best time for her and it worked for us. Because she didn’t need to get up for school it also meant that she could sleep longer in the mornings and therefore she was happier to learn as she was less tired.
Remember when your child is in school they are in a large class with one teacher teaching them. At home, you are one on one and can get the lesson across much faster as you only have your child/children to explain to. If you teach in a way, they understand that will become even easier over time. Use your child’s interests to make learning fun and engaging. If your child is interested in Pokémon plan your lessons using Pokémon.
My daughter loves books so quite a lot of our time was spent reading. We also watched a lot of history programmes and played maths games online. If your child wants to do a history project only then why not? Learning should be fun!
The beauty of being at home when everyone else is in school is that you can go to places that would otherwise be busy when they are super quiet!! You can visit museums, leisure centres, soft play, the cinema, the park … The list is endless. Take advantage of term times.
Out of term holidays can be much cheaper than in term, not to mention quieter! If you can take advantage of holidays in term time I’d say go for it!
As a home educator, you often get discounts for online resources, museums and attractions. Always ask before you buy.
We used to use a website called Education City which gave 40% off to home educators. We would also get discount’s at museums and we could also buy off-peak yearly memberships which worked out much cheaper for us.
Like I said in the introduction home education may or may not be a choice. Whatever your reasons for doing it try to enjoy it. I home educated my daughter for many years. I loved it. It was the best thing for her at that point in time. I worked around her and went at her pace.
We didn’t follow the curriculum properly but we did incorporate maths and things into general life. We also made many memories. Look at it as getting extra time with your child that other people don’t get. It’s a chance to bond and grow together. Who knows you may even learn too … I did!
Home educating is a must for many families. There are lots of online support groups and local meetups for people who home educate. As long as you are doing the best for your child then the local authority will not have an issue with it. Keep records of everything you do and show them at your annual review the progress your child is making. School isn’t for everyone.
We did it from year 3 to year 7, where our daughter decided for herself she would like to try secondary school. When mainstream secondary didn’t work we did another year of home education until we found a specialist placement in year 8. She is now thriving in a specialist educational setting. As much as we hope that will last until she leaves school, home education will always be an option in our house.
We hope these tips for home educating were helpful and insightful!
To find out more about home educating, why not check out this podcast:
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